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ou have just secured a great new recruit for your
business and now that’s out of the way you can get back
to running your business... But, wait just a minute. Before
that great new recruit starts, you need to spend time putting a
staff induction program in place. This program will maximise
your chances of ensuring a smooth transition for the new
employee into your business and assist them to be a productive
and efficient team member as quickly as possible.
And I know that is easier said than done, particularly if you are
a small business with resources stretched to breaking point and
no dedicated human resources function to attend to the task.
But a well-designed induction program is a ‘win-win’ for both
employers and employees and once in place it can be used as
an ongoing template for all future new recruits.
A comprehensive staff induction program should be about
creating a positive impression as well as providing insight into
your company. New employees are entering unknown territory
with respect to their manager, team, work environment and
culture, so it is important that they are made to feel welcome as
soon as possible and experience a structured introduction into
their new workplace.
In putting together an effective staff induction program the
following points should be considered as part of that process:
• Welcome - organisational structure, meeting other employees,
social programs, facilities tour
• Logistics - access, keys, after hours, phones, email, mail,
breaks, overtime, expected start and finish, cab charge, car
• Administration - pay day, bank details, annual, sick,
bereavement and parental leave, leave without pay,
emergency contact, superannuation, public holidays, family
• Legal requirements - relevant legislation, equal opportunity,
safety, harassment, privacy and confidentiality, termination,
incident and accident reporting
• Supervisor meeting - expectations, budgets, targets,
performance incentives, career prospects, role defined,
relationships defined, communication channels, evaluation
• Training - desirable skills, external and internal opportunities,
costs and rewards, mentoring programs
• Questions - an opportunity to ask questions of anyone in the
company. Invariably, new employees will have a lot of
questions, so it is also a good idea to consider allocating
some time with a number of representatives from each
functional area of your business so they can not only get to
know each other, one on one, but also gain a comprehensive
understanding of that person’s role in the company. This
should also assist in integrating the new starter with existing
employees and dispel any “us and them” mentalities that can
It is also worthwhile developing the items covered above into
a manual that can be easily accessed by anyone in the
company. This will not only reinforce policies for you but will
ensure a uniform approach for new employees as well as a point
of reference for existing staff.
Also, ensure that any staff induction program has some
flexibility and is developed specifically to meet the needs of each
new employee after taking into consideration their level in the
organisation, relevant work experience and their new position
description. Also, seek feedback from your employees, existing
and new, on any elements of the induction process that can be
improved or modified to ensure that the process remains relevant
and up to date with company procedures and objectives. As
well, keep abreast of any legislative changes that will impact on
your business and that need to be updated in your induction
manual e.g. health and safety, privacy guidelines etc. The
induction process really starts from the time you make an offer to
a new recruit and continues until they are completely comfortable
within your business. Investing time and attention to a thorough
induction process should minimise the period it takes for new
employees to “fit in” and will have the added benefit of increasing
their workplace satisfaction, productivity and, in turn, improve
team retention, commitment and spirit in your business. m
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Giving new employees
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Travel services provided by American Express International, Inc. ABN 15 000 618 208.
Incorporated with limited liability in Delaware, USA. Licensed Travel Agent, 12 Shelley Street, Sydney NSW 2000.
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